Shaft & Silo Dounreay


  • Nuclear


Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd


Complete CS&A design and detailing of new Shaft & Silo Headworks Facilities and associated cross site Waste Transfer Corridor in a fully collaborative BIM environment.

Description: SWA have been commissioned through M+W Group to undertake the Civil, Structural and Architectural design for the Dounreay Shaft and Silo decommissioning project by Dounreay Site Restoration Limited (DSRL) in Caithness, Scotland. The 7-year contract forms an integral part of the programme of works to decommission and restore the Dounreay site.

The existing 65-metre deep shaft is the deepest nuclear waste storage area of its kind in the world, whilst the wet silo is a 10 x 9 x 10.5m deep sub-surface watertight two-compartment reinforced concrete tank. The facilities have been used for over 40 and 30 years respectively to store Intermediate Level Waste (ILW) at Dounreay.

Decommissioning the Shaft and Silo is one of the most important projects on the Dounreay site and presents a number of unique technical and engineering challenges. The project will establish new retrieval, processing and packaging facilities that will enable waste from the Shaft and Silo to be treated safely and securely, rendering it suitable for long-term storage and future disposal.

The new facilities will comprise reinforced concrete process cells and steel frame overbuilding’s straddling the existing Shaft and Silo structures. The CS&A design will require integration with various elements of a mechanical process plant, robotic systems and EOT craneage demanding close collaboration within a large multi-discipline project team.

Services Provided

  • Static & Seismic Analysis for the full range of extreme environmental events
  • Drop & Impact Loading Assessments
  • Structural of Existing Shat & Silo Structures
  • Production of all associated CS&A Design Substantiation and Assessment Reports including BoD, ADMS, DJR, DSR, Conventional Fire Philosophy, FE Analysis, etc.)
  • Production of all CS&A Drawings, loading Schedules, Materials and Workmanship Specifications.
  • Production of construction strategy report and drawings making best use of modular construction techniques to facilitate off-site fabrication
  • Input to Safety Case Documentation.